California

‘They just can’t take this kind of beating’: California mansions on the brink

Author: Joshua Partlow Source: The Washington Post
February 22, 2024 at 06:07
Patrick T. Fallon/AFP/Getty Images
Patrick T. Fallon/AFP/Getty Images

The latest storm battering the California coast has brought fresh flooding, mudslides, sinkholes and coastal erosion — but the three mansions atop the cliffs of Dana Point remain anchored in place.
The latest storm battering the California coast has brought fresh flooding, mudslides, sinkholes and coastal erosion to the state — but the three mansions atop the cliffs of Dana Point remain anchored in place.

After a chunk of those cliffs sloughed off amid an atmospheric river earlier this month, the views from Scenic Drive in Orange County became even more dramatic, as the houses suddenly had very little separating them from the Pacific Ocean below.

The owner of the multimillion-dollar home closest to the landslide, Lewis Bruggeman, has told various media outlets that his house is stable despite its perilous appearance. And city officials have said the home is anchored to the bedrock. But an executive with an engineering firm that said it visited and assessed the property after the slide said future storms and rains are “going to continue to eat away at the slopes.”

“That’s going to need major, major work to stabilize that property,” said Kyle Tourjé, executive vice president of Alpha Structural, a Los Angeles engineering firm that specializes in soil and structural work. Bruggeman did not respond to The Washington Post’s requests for comment.

The erosion of the sheer cliffs is just one vivid example of the sloughing and sliding happening across Southern California as heavy rains this month have swollen rivers and waterlogged the soil. Tourjé said his firm has responded for emergency assessments and repairs for over 60 landslides in the past week in Southern California, a particularly heavy load.

“The rainy seasons always get busy for us, but this one’s beginning to change the game a little bit,” he said. “We’re seeing more damage, and I think we will continue to see more significant damage. Between back-to-back years of heavy saturation, these houses, these properties … they just can’t take this kind of beating.”

Read More (...)

Keywords
Advertisement
You did not use the site, Click here to remain logged. Timeout: 60 second